What Is Instagram Live?
Instagram Live is a broadcast you can share in real-time with your followers. It will show up as an Instagram story with a colorful ring around it and “Live” written at the bottom of the circle. When the live video ends, it disappears unless the creator shares it to their IGTV on their profile or to their story. Learning how to go live on Instagram takes just a few easy steps.
Instagram lives are a great way for your followers to interact with you and build a closer relationship. According to Hootsuite, 80 percent of audiences would rather watch a livestream than read a blog post, and 82 percent would rather watch a livestream than see a social media post. This shows its importance and how much it engages viewers.
How to Go Live on Instagram:
Step 1: Open the Instagram stories camera and swipe over to “Live.” Tap the live icon at the bottom to begin your broadcast.
Step 2: Once your Live has begun, you can see various features at the bottom of the screen that you can choose from to engage your viewers.
The features available include: sharing questions that viewers have submitted, sending a direct message to someone, inviting a guest by tapping the two faces icon, applying a filter and sharing an image or video to your screen.
Step 3: Once you want to end the Live, tap “End” at the top right corner and confirm by tapping on “End Now.”
Step 4: After your Instagram live has ended, you can choose to save and share your video. Share it to your story where it can be seen for the next 24 hours or as an IGTV where it will be saved to your profile.
Tips for Success:
Promote Your Live Beforehand
To run a successful Instagram live, promote the Live beforehand to prepare your audience and secure more views. You can do this by posting an Instagram story, letting your followers know at what time you’ll be going on. You can even add a countdown sticker that encourages your followers to set a reminder once they tap on the sticker.
Share an in-feed post telling your followers about the live and what they can expect during it. Have them ask questions in the comments of your post for the live, which will make your followers feel included and encourage them to join.
Prioritize Location and Lighting
Before you begin your live, consider your location and lighting. Plan out where you’ll be filming to ensure you have a good signal, good lighting and a good place to sit. Sit by a window for natural light, or get a ring light for brighter, even lighting. You don’t want to be moving around trying to find somewhere where your audience can see you clearly, you should have that from the start. Also, make sure you are somewhere comfortable and where you can easily charge your phone if needed.
Have a Goal and Plan
Have a goal and plan in mind to keep the conversation flowing and your viewers engaged. Will you be doing a Q&A session, advertising something new or just having a chat? Make sure you have key talking points and a structure to follow. Know what you’re trying to get out of the live, and focus on how you can achieve that.
There are many ways you can engage with your audience. Prepare questions to ask them and read their thoughts in the comments, or have a Q&A session with them using the questions feature available. Viewers can send in questions for you, or you can also get them from a previous post you shared. This creates a good conversation because you’ll be talking about things your viewers want to know. Find common questions and address them together to show their importance.
Create an Effective Start of Live
As viewers join the live, welcome them and “wave” at them using the waving icon to say hello. You should also pin your video’s title to give viewers that are joining in later some context about what the live is about. The number of viewers shows up on an icon at the top of the screen where you can see how many viewers have arrived or left. This is helpful so you can know when it is a good time to begin your conversation once there is a sufficient amount of viewers in.
Allow Viewers to Join In
Invite viewers to request to join your live, and have a short conversation with individual viewers. They can directly ask you a question, or you can learn something about them. This will help you build a personal connection with your followers and make them feel included.
Invite Special Guests
Have a special guest join in that can talk about a special topic. You can collaborate with another influencer, friend or specialist in the area you want to talk about. This can create a fun chat where viewers can ask specific questions and learn more about a specific topic. This will also help bring in more viewers and increase your engagement.
With special guests, you can also start a live room. This is a new feature that allows users to go live with up to three other people. If you are talking about fitness and health, for example, you can bring in a nutritionist or a personal trainer to join you. Have an informational session about a specific topic in that area. It will be credible and entertaining for your audience to watch.